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Friday, 27 February 2015

Free access to Irish Newspaper Archive: today only

https://www.irishnewsarchive.com/
Irish Newspaper Archive is offering an impromptu day of free access to its entire database. It's on today and only today.

To take advantage of the offer, login using the username Freebie and the password Freebie.

Free Q&A with RootsIreland on Facebook today

RootsIreland will be the experts in the chair for the first Ireland Family History 'Expert Session' of 2015. It will take place TODAY, from 1pm–5pm (GMT)

The Expert Session is hosted on Ireland Family History's Facebook page. If you need professional help with a specific Irish genealogy question (note the word 'specfic'), the RootsIreland team will aim to provide an answer and/or suggest appropriate direction for your research. As well as being specific, questions need to be concise and you have to post them to the Ireland Family History Facebook page within the four-hour time slot. (See Expert Session rules.)

I'm told the RootsIreland team will have specialists on hand from the IFHF network of heritage centres in Antrim/Down, Cavan, Kildare, Limerick, Mayo, Limerick and Wicklow, so there's excellent regional knowledge available.

Get your questions ready!


Thursday, 26 February 2015

Coming soon: Co Tipperary's mid-C19th Rate Books

If you have Tipperary ancestors, you'll be pleased to learn that some terrific new records are going to become available in the not too distant future.

Tipperary Studies, the local study reference library and archive of Tipperary Libraries, has embarked on a project to digitise its collection of material and make it freely accessible online.

"It's early days," Mary Guinan Darmody told Irish Genealogy News, "But we're hoping to start uploading some material to the website in the near future." A taster of the new material, a Lackagh Rate Book dating from 1850/1, is already online here, and it's great quality.

The move follows last June's local government reorganisation that merged the councils of North and South Tipperary. The Tipperary Studies team had set out on a fundraising campaign to buy the €24,000 scanner they needed to start their schedule of digitisation; the campaign went remarkably well, and the equipment was installed just before Christmas. Losing no time, the team has been kept busy not only carrying out their normal duties but also scanning some of the material they've identified as suitable for online viewing.

"More than 40 Rate Books have already been scanned and are ready for upload," says Mary. "We're also planning to make add relevant parts of the Books of Survey and Distribution, which date from the 1680s, an autograph book from one of the War of Independence Interment Camps and a Visitors Book from the Rock of Cashel, which dates from the 1860s."

There is currently no certain timetable for the uploading of the material – this isn't in the hands of the Tipperary Studies team – but Mary believes the Rate Books should appear very soon.

I'm rubbling my hands in anticipation!

Spring 2015 edition of Irish Roots magazine published

http://irish-roots-magazine.myshopify.com/
The Spring edition of Irish Roots Magazine has been published and delivers another crop of very helpful features for Irish family historians around the globe.

The second part of the Back To Basics series 'All you need to know to trace your Irish ancestors' should help to guide beginner and intermediate researchers, while another series – Locating Living Descendants – is sure to be a big hit with all those of us (and we are many!) who want to make contact with our lost cousins.

Sean Murphy concludes his 'Surnames of the Four Provinces' series by turning the spotlight on Ulster, and there's an expert round-up of sources available for tracing ancestors from County Kildare. The history of the Huguenots in Ireland is explored, you can find out about the burial place of St Patrick, and, from my own keyboard, you can enjoy a round-up of all the latest records and Irish genealogy developments from the last three months.

Heading overseas, this issue's Australian Connections feature looks at Bushrangers, while US Occupational sources are explored for those with Irish-American ancestors.

Add in general genealogy news and comment features, Letters to the Editor, Readers Experiences, and the always helpful Your Genealogy Questions Answered, and you have another fine issue of the magazine to read, learn from, and enjoy.

Print copies of the magazine are available in the shops or by post (click front cover image for details). Alternatively, Irish Roots is also available as a digital copy.


Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Tracing Your Donegal Ancestors: new edition

A third addition of Tracing Your Donegal Ancestors has been published by Flyleaf Press. The book, by Helen Meehan and Godfrey Duffy, sets out the records available for Donegal, where they can be accessed, and how they can be used to best effect in tracing families from this county – a notorious blackspot for genealogists.

It covers civil registration, census and census substitutes, directories, newspapers, land and estate records, wills and gravestone inscriptions, as well as church, education and emigration records. It also has details of surname and family histories and an extensive bibliography.

The first edition of the book was published in 1995; the second in 2008. This 2015 edition has been fully updated and has 161 pages with black and white illustrations.

Price: €13. Inclusive prices with Post and Packing: £14.50/UK; $22/USA; CAD$23; AUD$23; NZ$30.

See Flyleaf Press for order form.



Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Taking the pulse: the NAI's hospital records project

An update on the National Archives of Ireland's Survey of Hospital Records project was recently published in The Medical Independent, a newspaper and website principally aimed at doctors and other healthcare professionals.

The project, which is funded by the Wellcome Trust, aims to record the type, date range and quantity of pre-1970 records, as well as their overall condition and storage arrangements.

The feature gives us a bit of insight into the type of records we may one day be able to access. However, it points out that such hospital records currently have no legal protection, 'and it is often only through the good offices of interested hospital staff that material has been preserved'.

That's rather alarming!

Monday, 23 February 2015

Irish genealogy and history events, 23 Feb – 7 March

Monday 23 February: Civil Registration in Ireland, with Steven Smyrl MAPGI. First of the Lunchtime Genealogy Talks presented as part of the Aontas Adult Learner's Festival. Host: The Association of Professional Genealogists in Ireland (APGI.ie). Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Starts at 1:05pm. Free. No booking is necessary and all are welcome.

Monday 23 February: Palmerstown House and the Earls of Mayo, with Brian McCabe. Host: Clondalkin History Society. Venue: Arás Chronáin Irish Cultural Centre, Watery Lane, Clondalkin, Co Dublin. 8pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 24 February: Irish Census records, with Helen Kelly MAPGI. Second of the Lunchtime Genealogy Talks presented as part of the Aontas Adult Learner's Festival. Host: The Association of Professional Genealogists in Ireland (APGI.ie). Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Starts at 1:05pm. Free. No booking is necessary and all are welcome.

Tuesday 24 February: Local and Family History Morning, at Dún na Sí, Amenity & Heritage Centre, Moate, Co Westmeath. 10:30am to 12:30pm. Tel: 090 64 81183. €8, includes refreshments.

Tuesday 24 February: The language of hunger: retrieving the lost voices of the Great Irish Famine, with Dr Ciarán Reilly. Host: South East Galway Archaeological & Historical Society. Venue: Irish Workhouse Centre, St. Brigid's Road, Portumna, Co. Galway. 8:30pm. As usual, all are welcome.

Wednesday 25 February: Cumann na mBan in Leitrim, with Cormac O Suilleabhain. Venue: Ballinamore County Library, Main Street, Ballinamore, Co Leitrim. 8pm. Free admission. All welcome.

Wednesday 25 February: Using Church records, with Rosaleen Underwood MAPGI. Third of the Lunchtime Genealogy Talks presented as part of the Aontas Adult Learner's Festival. Host: The Association of Professional Genealogists in Ireland (APGI.ie). Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Starts at 1:05pm. Free. No booking is necessary and all are welcome.

Wednesday 25 February: Tracing your 20th-Century Military Ancestors, with Nicola Morris MAPGI. Evening lecture presented as part of the Aontas Adult Learner's Festival. Host: The Association of Professional Genealogists in Ireland (APGI.ie). Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Starts at 6:30pm. Free. No booking is necessary and all are welcome.

Wednesday 25 February: Open Genealogy Consulatation, with Lisa Dougherty. Host: Irish American Heritage Museum. Venue: 370 Broadway, Albany, New York 12207, USA. No booking necessary. Consultations on a first come, first served basis between 11:00 - 2pm (EDT). Free.

Thursday 26 February: Post-Plantation migration to/from Ulster, with Paddy Fitzgerald. Host: Strabane History Society. Venue: Room 5, Strabane Library, 1 Railway Street, Strabane, co Tyrone BT82 8EF. 7:30pm.

Thursday 26 February: Researching WWI Servicemen’s Graves in the Ballymena & Antrim Area, with Nigel Henderson. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Ballymena Branch. Michelin Arts Workshop, Braid Arts Centre, 1-29 Bridge Street, Ballymena, BT43 5EJ. 7:15pm. Free. All welcome.

Thursday 26 February: Launch of Limerick through the looking glass: the Ludlow Collection Exhibition. The collection comprises photos of Limerick people and scenes from the turn of the 19th/20th century. Host: Limerick Museum & Archives. Venue: the Glazed Street, City Hall, Limerick. 6:30pm. Free.

Thursday 26 February: Land records, with Joan Sharkey MAPGI. Fourth of the Lunchtime Genealogy Talks presented as part of the Aontas Adult Learner's Festival. Host: The Association of Professional Genealogists in Ireland (APGI.ie). Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Starts at 1:05pm. Free. No booking is necessary and all are welcome.

Thursday 26 February: Fairies, Legends and Landscape... the folklore of Ireland, with Dr Jennifer Butler. Host: Ballygarvan & District Local History Society. Venue: Park Hotel by Radisson, Cork Airport, Cork. 8pm. €5 for non-members.

Thursday 26 February: Tour of the Conservation Studios. National Museum of Ireland, Collins Barracks, Dublin. Admission free but booking essential. 2:30pm–4pm.

Friday 27 February: Using the Internet for genealogical research, with John Grenham MAPGI. Host: The Association of Professional Genealogists in Ireland (APGI.ie). Last of the Lunchtime Genealogy Talks presented as part of the Aontas Adult Learner's Festival. Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Starts at 1:05pm. Free. No booking is necessary and all are welcome. This lecture will be followed by an Open Forum discussion with a panel of professional genealogists.

Friday 27 February: Preserving the Peace: Women in Policing, with Garda Commissioner, Nóirín O’Sullivan. Venue: National Museum of Ireland, Country Life, Turlough, Castlebar, co Mayo. Booking required. 7pm-8pm. Free.

Saturday, 28 February: Finding Your Irish Ancestors in New York City, with Joe Buggy. Host: New York Irish History Roundtable. Venue: Glucksman Ireland House, New York University, One Washington Mews, New York, NY 10003. 2pm. Free to NYIHR members and NYU affiliates, otherwise $10 donation. Details.

Monday 2 March: The men who built the Olympic Class ships, with Alison Murphy. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Killyleagh Branch. Venue: Killyleagh Masonic Hall, 50 High Street, Killyleagh, Co Down, BT30 9QF. 8pm. Free. All welcome.

Tuesday 3 March: Presentation of family history research carried out during the year by individual members. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Omagh Branch. Venue: Omagh Library, Dublin Road, Omagh, Co Tyrone BT78 1HL. 7:15pm. Free. All welcome.

Thursday 5 March: Belfast, Co Down – Fact or Fiction? and Making more sense of the Census. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society. Venue: Holywood Arches Library, Holywood Road, Belfast, BT4 1NT. 7:30pm. Free. All welcome.

Thursday 5 March: The Genealogy of the Anglo-Norman Lynches who Settled in Galway, with Paul B McNulty. Venue: Lynch Theatre, O’Brien Centre for Science, UCD, Belfield, Dublin 4. 7:30pm. Free, but reserve your place by email.

Thursday 5 March:
The story of Blarney Castle Gardens, with Adam Whitbourn. Host: Blarney & District Historical Society. Venue: Scoil Mhuire Gan Smal, Blarney, Co Cork. 8pm. Everone welcome.

Saturday 7 March: Paradise Lost – the demise and dispersal of the Irish Country House Interior, with Kerry Mullaly. Venue: Tipperary County Museum, Mick Delahunty Square, Clonmel, Co Tipperary. 10am to Noon, with refreshments provided. €5 per session. Bookings: julia.walsh@tipperarycoco.ie or 076 106 5564.

Saturdays 7 March and 14 March: Strategies for Finding Your Irish Ancestors, with Donna Moughty. Host: Virtual Institute of Genealogical Research. Two lectures, one at 11am, the other at 1pm (USA/EST) on each day. Cost:  From US$69.99. Details of lectures and registration.

Saturday, 7 March:
Finding Your Irish Townland of Origin: Research in the U.S. and Ireland, with Joe Buggy. Host: Sachem Public Library. Venue: Sachem Public Library, 150 Holbrook Road, Holbrook, NY 11741, USA. 1-3pm, free to all. For more details, email AnneMarie.Tognella@sachemlibrary.org.


Friday, 20 February 2015

Have your say: Northern Ireland Libraries open hours


Here's an opportunity to have your say about the reduced hours of service being imposed on Northern Ireland's libraries.

Last November, the Board of Libraries NI cut opening hours at very short notice, without any public consultation, saying the reduced hours were an 'emergency' step and 'temporary'. They now say the revised hours will continue until at least Autumn this year. And just for good measure they plan to reduce the hours of some libraries still further from the Autumn. Fifty-two of the ninety-eight libraries in the Northern Ireland network are subject to cuts. Only five libraries gained hours.

The Board has now agreed, relunctantly, to find out what the people who pay for the service think of these proposals. An online survey – LNI Opening Hours Review 2015 Adult Questionnaire – is now available, as are hard copies in public libraries.

The public consultation will continue until 17 April.

FindMyPast offers 50% discount on annual sub

If you act quickly, you can take advantage of a 50% discount on an annual subscription to FindMyPast. As far as I can see*, the offer is valid only via FindMyPast Ireland and FindMyPast UK.

The discount, which expires tomorrow at 11:59pm (GMT), reduces the cost of the 12-month subscriptions to:

FindMyPast Ireland
: World collection – €74.75; Ireland collection – €49.75
FindMyPast UK: World collection – £64.75; Britain collection – £49.75

All you have to do is follow the link to the Subscribe page on either the IE or UK site, make your choice of subscription, type the word RATIONING in the Discount Code box and click the 'apply' button.

At the end of the 12-month period, your subscription will automatically renew at the standard price. If you don't wish that to happen, visit the 'My Account' section of the site and un-tick the 'auto-renew my subscription' box.

* The USA/Canada and Australia/NewZealand sites are telling me the code has expired.

This discount offer has now expired across all FindMyPast territories.

Thursday, 19 February 2015

Ancestry adds Royal Navy Registers of Service 1900-28

Ancestry has a new resource that might be useful to those with Irish ancestors who took to the waters. It's the UK Royal Navy Registers of Seamen's Services 1900 to 1928 collection.

The records do exactly what you'd expect from the tin: they record the service of seamen in the Royal Navy, so you can discover which vessels they served on and the dates of service. They also include birthplace, prior occupation, physical description, reasons for discharge and other personal details. (I've found one of my Santrys recorded as 'invalided' by reason of gonorrhea... ah, the stuff of family history, just made for dinner-table discussion.)

The title of the record set could be a little misleading. These registers include seamen who began their service between 1900 and 1918; their dates of service may continue up to 1928.

As far as I can tell, there are a total of nearly 400,000 seamen included in this collection, which is held by the National Archives of the UK in Kew, London. Around 6,300 of the records relate to men born in Ireland.

Just a word of warning. The geographical awareness of the indexers or OCR equipment that prepared this database is pretty poor. With very little effort, I've found Skibbereen in County Cork recorded as Shibbereen, Sabbereen, Kibbereen, Skibbecen, Skibberun and Shibberan; Clonakilty as Cloakelty, Clona Kilty and Elonakilty; Drimoleague as Dkimoleagus; and Roscarferry, which at least is funny.

Outside of Cork there's Ballb??ggan, Lectrim, Bray in Wecklow, and Kathmines and ??ords in Dublin. There are also at least 10 men recorded as signing up aged in their 50s and 60s, which I don't quite believe. In other words, be a bit imaginative when you search this collection.

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Full-day of Irish lectures at Fairfax VA conference

Fairfax Genealogical Society, based in Virginia, USA, will be holding its Spring Conference 27-28 March. The programme includes a full-day of Irish-themed lectures by Joe Buggy, a genealogist from Co Kilkenny who's now living in Washington.

He'll be making four presentations on Saturday 28 March, as follows:

9:00am to 10:00am
 : Finding your Irish Townland of Origin: Research in the U.S. and Ireland.

10:30am to 11:30am
 : Advance Irish genealogy: Delving further into Irish sources.

1:15pm to 2:15pm    : Cemetery and headstone research in Ireland.

2:45pm to 3:45pm
   : Planning a genealogy trip to Ireland.

You can find full description of his talks and those of other speakers, together with registration information on the Society's website: http://fxgs.org.

In addition, Joe will be doing one-to-one Consult the Experts sessions on the Friday evening, before his talks. Details.

Fancy a month's sub to the Irish Times Archive for €1?

Click for full details of the new subscription model
The Irish Times (IT), traditionally Ireland's newspaper of record, will be introducing a new subscription model from Monday 23 February. The objective is to get the publication's online presence to start paying more of the bills – a cause common among print publications, these days. It means that those who have been happily receiving most of their news via the previously free-of-charge online IT, are going to find their news reading severely curtailed.

I admit to having been one of the freeloaders (I'm in good company here!) and I won't much care for being restricted to just 10 news stories a week under the new regime for non-subscribers to the digital edition.

Fortunately, there are some good alternatives to the IT, and I frequently read them anyway, so switching to another non-charging news site isn't going to be such a big deal. But that's not the issue here; there's more to this development than access to the daily news, and it's of particular interest to Irish family historians.

In addition to getting unlimited access to irishtimes.com on your computer, tablet and smartphone, the new standard digital subscription of €12 a month will provide full access to the Irish Times Archive. This archive holds all editions of the paper right back to its very first year of publication: 1859. That's an archive of more than 10million articles. Digital versions are available right the way up to the present, with a digital copy of all new editions uploaded to the archive one week after publication. There's also a text version of articles from 1996 onwards.

There are other benefits to the subscription, and, indeed, other subscription options right down to home delivery of the print publication on top of the digital features, but it's this online archive access that may swing it for the genealogist.

For a start, this new model makes the Irish Times Archive much better value than previously. The 'old' subscription rates for Archive access were pretty horrendous: annual £395 / 30 days €65 / weekly €26 / 24 hours, €10.

The new subscription of €12 a month looks so much more attractive!

When the new subscription model comes to life on Monday, there will be an introductory first-month offer of just €1. Subscriptions are paid in advance and are automatically renewed unless cancelled. You have to give 10 days' notice to cancel. You'll find all the features of the different subscription plans and their costs by clicking the image above.

I don't suppose I'll be the only one who signs up for the standard sub and blitzes that Archive over the following four weeks before cancelling.

Tuesday, 17 February 2015

New online Co Clare records: RC Baptisms, WW1 & IRA

Hardly a week goes by without Clare County Library adding some goodies to its free online archive! Here are the most recent additions:


RC Baptisms – Kilmaley Parish


Transcribed from LDS film, the baptisms from the Roman Catholic Kilmaley Parish registers have been transcribed and donated by John Mayer. The transcriptions cover all entries from 1832 to 1843. Kilmaley is in the Diocese of Killaloe.

Nearly all the records give the name of the child, date of baptism, father's first name, mother's first name and maiden name, and sponsors' names. Only a small proportion of the baptisms in the earlier years provide details of the parents' townland, but this information is given in almost every case towards the end of the period. The date of the parents' marriage is also recorded in some cases.

As far as I'm aware, the Kilmaley baptism records are not online anywhere else.

UPDATE, 25 Feb: The transcriptions now cover all years to 1828 to 1845.


IRA Roll of Honour 1916–1925


This Roll of Honour of more than 70 active members of the IRA in County Clare between the years 1916 and 1925 has been transcribed from the Diamond Jubilee edition of The Banner. This was published by the Claremen and Women’s Patriotic, Benevolent and Social Association of New York in 1963. These entries had originally appeared in the Clare Champion.

In addition, biographies of some of the men have also been transcribed from The Banner.


Clare Men and Women in the Great War 1914-1918


The work of Ger Browne, this collection of records holds a wealth of material for those with Clare ancestors who fought in WW1, and is worth thorough investigation by anyone with ancestors from the county. It's an on-going online archive, frequently updated and the most recent update includes 100 years of reports on the war from Clare newspapers, individual profiles of soldiers and an article on the war by Peadar McNamara.

See the full selection of records available in the Clare Men & Women in the Great War collection.

National Archives of Ireland: online problems

The National Archives of Ireland is experiencing server problems. These seem to have started yesterday and are on-going, so access via the main website (www.nationalarchives.ie) and the dedicated Genealogy section (www.genealogy.nationalarchives.ie) is very hit and miss. I was able to access and search the census last night on the genealogy site, but this morning I can't get past the census 'home' page.

The National Archives tell me they became aware of the problem yesterday when emails stopped getting through and were bouncing back to senders.

The IT department is working to fix the problem. No time scale yet, but it is in hand.

Monday, 16 February 2015

IGP-web latest: team starts on 1848 RIC records

Here's the list of additions to the Ireland Genealogy Projects Archives in the last two weeks. You'll see that the team has just started adding Royal Irish Constabulary men from 1848 (see Carlow). The 1847 RIC records for all Ireland were completed a couple of years ago; you can find them in the Military & Constabulary heading in each county's archive.

Rosahane graveyard, Co Wicklow.
Photo courtesy of Eadaoin Breslin.
Ireland Genealogy ArchivesNew in February.

CARLOW Archives – Military & Constabulary
Irish Constabulary from Carlow – 1848

CAVAN Genealogy Archives – Headstones
Tomregan Parish Church (CoI), Ballyconnell

DUBLIN Genealogy Archives – Headstones
Deansgrange Cem. St. Mary's Section, Pt 6
Mount Jerome, Dublin - Part 94 & 95

KERRY Genealogy Archives – Headstones
Killiney Burial Ground, Castlegregory

KILKENNY Genealogy Archives – Miscellaneous
Electors for the Polling District of Callan, 1884-85

ROSCOMMON Genealogy Archives – Headstones
Strokestown Scramogue Cemetery. (R.C.) (part)
Strokestown Cemetery (RC) (part)

SLIGO, Genealogy Archives – Vital Records
Assorted Death Records 1869

WICKLOW, Genealogy Archives – Headstones
Rosahane Graveyard

Irish genealogy and heritage events, 16 – 28 February

Monday 16 February: The Cork, Bandon and Southcoast Railway, with Chris Larkin. Host: Enniskeane Area Heritage Group and Ballineen & Enniskeane Dev Assoc. Venue: Cort Mhuire, Ballineen, Co Cork. 8pm. €5 (students free). All welcome.

Monday 16 February: History of Derry through the River Foyle, with Roy Hamilton. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Foyle Branch. Venue: City's Central Library, 35 Foyle Street, Derry, Co LondonDerry BT48 6AL. 7pm. All welcome. (Rescheduled from 2 February.)

Monday 16 February: Sir Richard and William Vitruvius Morrison and their remodeling of the Irish Country House, with Edmund Joyce. Part of the Carton Lecture Series. Host: Centre for the Study of Historic Irish Houses and Estates & NUI Maynooth. Venue: Carton House, Maynooth, Co Kildare. Admission fee €10. Light refreshments served from 7:15pm. Enquiries (0)1 651 7708.

Monday 16 February: The workhouse in Larne, with Rev John Nelson. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Larne Branch. Venue: Larne Bowling & Lawn Tennis Club, 112-120 Glenarm Road, Larne, BT40 1DZ. 7:30pm. All welcome.

Monday 16 February: James H Tuke, Quaker Philanthropist, with Gerry Moran. Host: Galway Archaeological and Historical Society. Venue: Harbour Hotel, Dock Road, Galway. 8pm.

Tuesday 17 February to Saturday 28 April: The 1913 Lockout Tapestry will be on display. Consisting of 32 panels illustrating the historical event that saw 100,000 people in Dublin facing starvation as a consequence of a conflict between capital and labour forces. A collaborative visual arts project of commemoration. Dublin City Library & Archive, Pearse Street, Dublin 2. Free.

Wednesday 18 February: Explore Archives Online. Practical workshops and behind the scenes tours. Host and Venue: Public Record Office of Northern Ireland, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. 2—4:30pm. Free. Fully booked. Waiting list: email at proni@dcalni.gov.uk.

Wednesday 18 February: A sort of homecoming: Irish soldiers and the aftermath of the Great War, with Dr Myles Dungan. Host and Venue: Newry & Mourne Museum, Bagenal's Castle, Castle Street, 1A Bank Parade, Newry BT34 2BY. 7:30pm. Light refreshments served. Free but need to book by phone to 028 3031 3173 or email.

Wednesday 18 February: Waterford people and stories from old newspapers, with William Fraher. Host: Waterford County Museum. Venue: Green Room, Town Hall, Dungarvan, Co Waterford. 8 pm. Admission: €5.00

Wednesday 18 February: Memories of the Emergency in Dublin, with Mary Muldowney. Host: Ballsbridge, Donnybrook and Sandymount Historical Society. Venue: Pembroke Library, Anglesea Road, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4. 1pm. Book via Library on (01)668 9575 or pembrokelibrary@dublincity.ie.

Wednesday 18 February: The Quakers in Carlow, with John Smyth. Host: Carlow Historical and Archaeological Society. Venue: Seven Oaks Hotel, Carlow. 8pm. All welcome.

Thursday 19 February: Beginning your family history, with Clare Roots Society. Venue: Maguire Suite, Old Ground Hotel, O'Connell Street, Ennis, Co. Clare. 8pm. Everyone welcome.

Thursday 19 February: Digital records, with Joan Magee. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, North down and Ards Branch. Venue: 1st Presbyterian Church Hall, Main Street, Bangor, Co Down. 7:30pm. All welcome.

Thursday 19 February: Becoming revolutionary: The year before 1916, with Brian Hughes. Hosts: Glasnevin Trust and Trinity College Dublin. Venue: Glasnevin Cemetery Museum, Finglas Road, Dublin 11. 7pm. Tickets €10 (or €40 the series). Bookings by telephone (0)1 882 6550 or email: booking@glasnevintrust.ie.

Saturday 21 February: Irish genealogy workshop, with Ruth Blair. Host: Ontario Genealogical Society & Heritage Mississauga. Venue: Heritage Mississaugam, Robinson Adamson House,1921 Dundas St. West, Mississaugam, Ontario, Canada. $25.00. 10am to 3pm. To reserve your place, call 905-828-8411 ext 0.

Saturday 21 February: Irish Genealogy help session, with Kathleen McGee, at 10am; Irish Famine Records at NARA, with Dorothy Dougherty at 11am. Host: Irish Family History Forum. Venue: Bethpage Public Library, 47 Powell Avenue, Bethpage, NY, 11714, USA. Details.

Saturday 21 February: Family history and folklore, with Seamus MacAnnaidh. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Fermanagh Branch. Venue: The Library, Halls Lane, Enniskillen, Co. Fermanagh, BT74 7DR. 2:15pm. All welcome.

Monday 23 February: Civil Registration in Ireland, with Steven Smyrl. First of the Lunchtime Genealogy Talks presented as part of the Aontas Adult Learner's Festival. Host: The Association of Professional Genealogists in Ireland. Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Starts at 1:05pm. Free. No booking is necessary and all are welcome.

Monday 23 February: Palmerstown House and the Earls of Mayo, with Brian McCabe. Host: Clondalkin History Society. Venue: Arás Chronáin Irish Cultural Centre, Watery Lane, Clondalkin, Co Dublin. 8pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 24 February: Irish Census records, with Helen Kelly. Second of the Lunchtime Genealogy Talks presented as part of the Aontas Adult Learner's Festival. Host: The Association of Professional Genealogists in Ireland.Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Starts at 1:05pm. Free. No booking is necessary and all are welcome.

Tuesday 24 February: Local and Family History Morning, at Dún na Sí, Amenity & Heritage Centre, Moate, Co Westmeath. 10:30am to 12:30pm. Tel: 090 64 81183. €8, includes refreshments.

Tuesday 24 February: The language of hunger: retrieving the lost voices of the Great Irish Famine, with Dr Ciarán Reilly. Host: South East Galway Archaeological & Historical Society. Venue: Irish Workhouse Centre, St. Brigid's Road, Portumna, Co. Galway. 8:30pm. As usual, all are welcome.

Wednesday 25 February: Cumann na mBan in Leitrim, with Cormac O Suilleabhain. Venue: Ballinamore County Library, Main Street, Ballinamore, Co Leitrim. 8pm. Free admission. All welcome.

Wednesday 25 February: Using Church records, with Rosaleen Underwood. Third of the Lunchtime Genealogy Talks presented as part of the Aontas Adult Learner's Festival. Host: The Association of Professional Genealogists in Ireland. Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Starts at 1:05pm. Free. No booking is necessary and all are welcome.

Wednesday 25 February: Tracing your 20th-Century Military Ancestors, with Nicola Morris MAPGI. Evening lecture presented as part of the Aontas Adult Learner's Festival. Host: The Association of Professional Genealogists in Ireland. Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Starts at 6:30pm. Free. No booking is necessary and all are welcome.

Wednesday 25 February: Open Genealogy Consulatation, with Lisa Dougherty. Host: Irish American Heritage Museum. Venue: 370 Broadway, Albany, New York 12207, USA. No booking necessary. Consultations on a first come, first served basis between 11:00 - 2pm (EDT). Free.

Thursday 26 February: Post-Plantation migration to/from Ulster, with Paddy Fitzgerald. Host: Strabane History Society. Venue: Room 5, Strabane Library, 1 Railway Street, Strabane, co Tyrone BT82 8EF. 7:30pm.

Thursday 26 February:
Launch of Limerick through the looking glass: the Ludlow Collection Exhibition. The collection comprises photos of Limerick people and scenes from the turn of the 19th/20th century. Host: Limerick Museum & Archives. Venue: the Glazed Street, City Hall, Limerick. 6:30pm. Free.

Thursday 26 February: Land records, with Joan Sharkey. Fourth of the Lunchtime Genealogy Talks presented as part of the Aontas Adult Learner's Festival. Host: The Association of Professional Genealogists in Ireland. Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Starts at 1:05pm. Free. No booking is necessary and all are welcome.

Thursday 26 February: Fairies, Legends and Landscape... the folklore of Ireland, with Dr Jennifer Butler. Host: Ballygarvan & District Local History Society. Venue: Park Hotel by Radisson, Cork Airport, Cork. 8pm. €5 for non-members.

Thursday 26 February: Tour of the Conservation Studios. National Museum of Ireland, Collins Barracks, Dublin. Admission free but booking essential. 2:30pm–4pm.

Friday 27 February: Using the Internet for genealogical research, with John Grenham. Host: The Association of Professional Genealogists in Ireland. Last of the Lunchtime Genealogy Talks presented as part of the Aontas Adult Learner's Festival. Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Starts at 1:05pm. Free. No booking is necessary and all are welcome. This lecture will be followed by an Open Forum discussion with a panel of professional genealogists.

Friday 27 February: Preserving the Peace: Women in Policing, with Garda Commissioner, Nóirín O’Sullivan. Venue: National Museum of Ireland, Country Life, Turlough, Castlebar, co Mayo. Booking required. 7pm-8pm. Free.

Saturday, 28 February: Finding Your Irish Ancestors in New York City, with Joe Buggy. Host: New York Irish History Roundtable. Venue: Glucksman Ireland House, New York University, One Washington Mews, New York, NY 10003. 2pm. Free to NYIHR members and NYU affiliates, otherwise $10 donation. Details.

Friday, 13 February 2015

UHF Irish & Scots-Irish genealogy tour 2015

The Ulster Historical Foundation has finalised its annual Genealogy Tour to North America. Most of the lectures are specially geared towards Irish and/or Scots-Irish ancestry research, but some explore quite specific areas of Irish genealogical research ie Griffiths Valuation, the Plantation.

Take a look at the full guide to the tour – topics, dates, locations, registration links, telephone numbers etc – on the UHF website, AncestryIreland.com.

Here's a brief summary of the whistle-stop tour:

Saturday 14 March     : Ottawa, ONT
Sunday 15 March       : State College, PA
Monday 16 March       : Staunton, VA
Tuesday 17 March      : Williamsburg, VA
Wednesday 18 March : WinchesterVA
Friday 20 March         : Maryville, TN
Saturday 21 March     : Boston, MA
Sunday 22 March       : Fairfield, CT
Monday 23 March       : Pittsburgh , PA
Wednesday 25 March : Green Bay, WI
Friday 27 March         : Moscow, ID
Saturday 28 March     : Yakima, WA
Sunday 29 March       : Oakland, CA
Monday 30 March       : Medford, OR

Derry archivists to digitise City's historic building plans

Derry's London Street and Artillery Street
have a curious mix of architecture
Derry City Council’s Archive & Genealogy Service are working with Guildhall Press on an innovative pilot digitisation and cataloguing project which will see hundreds of Derry’s historic building plans become available to the public for the first time.

The collection is a unique resource that contains plans, elevations and design details for a range of significant buildings and architecture across the city including the Guildhall, the War Memorial, Carlisle Bridge and local schools, churches and residences.

All the documents were submitted for bye-law approval to the old Londonderry Corporation and to the Londonderry Development Commission.

A core team of volunteers will be trained in a number of archival and digital skills including conservation, cataloguing and digitisation.

Funded by the NIE’s NGO Challenge Fund, the project will digitise around 500 plans and make them available to view online on a purpose-built freely accessible website. In addition, a printed catalogue of the collection will be produced and disseminated across the NorthWest to libraries, schools, universities and local interest groups. It's also intended that a portable exhibition will be created for display at community venues and events.

IGRS launches Early Irish Births Index at RootsTech

Roz McCutcheon FIGRS, the force behind
both the Early Irish Marriage Index and the
new Early Irish Birth Index
The Irish Genealogical Research Society has added another database of pre-civil registration records to its website IrishAncestors.ie, and this time it's the Early Irish Births Index.

Like the Early Irish Marriage Index launched just under two years ago and now offering details of more than 66,000 marriages, this new database is being managed by Roz McCutcheon FIGRS; she officially launched it yesterday during her 'Irish records: Beyond the Obvious' presentation at RootsTech in Salt Lake City, Utah, USA.

"My early Irish Marriage Index was launched in 2012 and received an enthusiastic response," she said. "It has continued to grow, and I have been assured by many researchers that it has been an invaluable aid in breaking down their brick walls.

"This has encouraged me to launch an Early Irish Birth Index, using the same sources as the Marriage Index, and covering the same period – 1660 to 1863. Again, no birth will be included from parish registers, as all the surviving registers are being gradually placed online elsewhere."

The first upload for the Birth Index sees more than 5,000 entries drawn mainly from newspapers, gravestones and early census fragments. Roz has also collated details of births culled from Memorials held by the Registry of Deeds, from Naval records at the UK National Archives in Kew, from evidence of birth provided for Trinity College Dublin admissions, from private diaries and from the occurrence books kept by various people, recording interesting occurrences in their neighbourhoods.

While the Early Marriage Index is fully and freely accessible to the public, the Early Irish Births Index is available only to members of the IGRS, via the Members-Only area of IrishAncestors.ie. However, a restricted surname-only search is available to non-members and tells users how many matching entries are within the full database.

FindMyPast adds a cool 100m records – just like that!

FindMyPast is strutting its stuff over at RootsTech in Utah this week, and to make sure it keeps the spotlight shining on its ambitions, it's launched a cool 100million records today. Yep. One hundred million.

Sadly, they're not Irish records (can you imagine!!), but there're some useful additions to the FindMyPast pot for those with emigrant ancestors who headed to North America. Here's an overview:

US Immigration and Travel records

Consisting of more than 75million records, the biggest slice of the new material tops up FindMyPast's collection of US Immigration & Travel records. It includes Passenger lists, Arrivals and Naturalisation records. The individual record sets are listed below and you can search them here: US Immigration & Travel records

  • New York City Passenger lists 1820-1957
  • New York, Buffalo, Niagara Falls and Rochester Arrivals 1902-1954
  • Florida, Key West passenger lists 1898-1945
  • Florida, Tampa passenger lists 1898-1945
  • North Carolina, Wilmington and Morehead City Passenger lists 1908-1958
  • Louisiana, New Orleans passenger lists 1903-1945
  • Hawaii, Honolulu passenger lists 1900-1953
  • Massachusetts, Boston passenger lists 1820-1943
  • United States, Atlantic Ocean and Gulf Coast Ports Passenger lists, 1820-1874
  • Michigan, Detroit passenger lists 1900-1965
  • California, San Francisco passenger lists 1893-1953
  • California, Los Angeles, San Pedro and Wilmington Passenger lists 1900-1948
  • Maryland, Baltimore passenger lists 1820-1957
  • Washington, Seattle passenger lists 1890-1957
  • Ohio, County Naturalization records 1800-1977
  • Minnesota Naturalizations 1930-1988
  • West Virginia Naturalizations 1814-1991
  • Idaho Eastport Arrivals 1900-1962
  • Texas, Eagle Pass Arrivals 1905-1953

US Vital records
 
Over 13.6 million new Vital records have been added. These include birth certificates, death records, marriage licences, divorce decrees, naturalisation records and adoption records. Vital records were not widely kept in the United States until the early 20th century and are usually documented by a civil authority or local municipality. Local churches often provide the earliest instances of birth, marriage and death certificates well before mandatory government registration. See the list below, and search them here: US Vital records
  • North Carolina deaths 1906-1930
  • South Carolina Deaths 1915-1943
  • Massachusetts Marriages 1841-1915
  • Indiana Marriages 1811-1959
  • Idaho County marriages 1864-1950
  • Idaho death certificates 1911-1937
  • California, San Francisco Area Funeral Home records 1835-1931
  • California, County Marriages 1850-1952
  • Washington, King County Delayed Births 1941-1942
  • Georgia Births and Christenings 1754-1940
  • Washington, County Marriages 1855-2008
  • Washington, County Deaths 1891-1907
  • Louisiana, Orleans parish estate files 1804-1846
  • Montana County marriages 1865-1950
  • Utah, Salt Lake County birth records 1890-1908
  • Utah, Salt Lake County death records 1908-1949

US Census and substitute records
 
More than 11.5million new records have been added to FindMyPast's collection of US Census records. The record sets are listed below and they can be searched here: US Census and substitute records
  • US Census 1850 Slave Schedule
  • California State Census 1852
  • Minnesota state census 1865, 1875, 1885, 1895 and 1905
  • South Dakota State Census 1905, 1915, 1925, 1935 and 1945
  • Alabama State Census 1855 and 1866
  • Florida State Census 1935 and 1945
  • Colorado State Census 1885
  • Minnesota Territorial Census 1857
  • US Census 1930 Merchant Seaman schedule
  • US Census 1850 Mortality Schedule
  • California Great Registers 1866-1910

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Irish ancestors who worked in mines or quarries?

Old Leighlin Quarry, Co Kilkenny.
Even in modern times, quarries remain dangerous places.
Just before Christmas, Ancestry added a new database – UK Coal Mining Accidents and Deaths Index, 1700–1950. It's one of their 'Web Search' databases, meaning it's linked to the records held on a free site, in this case, The Coalmining History Resource Centre (CMHR). Distracted by this database being listed only as a UK record set, rather than a UK & Ireland collection, I didn't think much of it until I was alerted to its Irish content by Colin from Liverpool (cheers, Col!).

Better late than never, I've taken an exploratory whirl through the records and I certainly think it's worth checking out, either via the Ancestry index or the CMHR site.

It holds a total of 164,000 entries of deaths and accidents occurring in England, Wales, Scotland and the island of Ireland. Not all of the locations are coal mines; metal mines and stone quarries are also included. More than 350 of the incidents occurred in Irish quarries and mines, but there are many more that took place in England, Wales and Scotland involving men whose permanent residence was recorded as Ireland.

Year of birth is provided in the majority of cases, along with a description of the incident that caused death or injury.

Here are some examples from the database:

James and Patrick Harrington, miners living in Allihies, Co Cork, were killed in a dynamite explosion at Berehaven Colliery on 18 January 1881. 'No inquest held the cartridge being frozen they thoughtlessly warming it on top of a hot iron tube instead of warm water as recommended.' Five others were injured.

Maurice Flynn, a 55-year-old labourer working at Belfast Quarry, Killarney, was injured on 24 March 1916 when a stone fell on his head, causing swelling.

William Wilson of Castlecomer, Co Kerry, 'died suddenly at his post - heart disease' on 8 January 1880 when working as a hooker-on at Jarrow No 2 Colliery in North-East England.

Fisherman John Driscoll, born 1815, died on 11 October 1879 when he 'fell into an unfenced part of old opencast workings near the North-West mine (near Clonakilty, co Cork) after missing a turning in the road on his way home'.

The geographical data in these records is not always correct. I've found many examples of places ie Mid-Glamorgan, Edinburgh and Glasgow being recorded as Ireland, so there may well be cases where accidents in Irish quarries and mines are recorded as located in one of the other countries.

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Digitisation plans for Griffiths Valuation (and more)

Two news updates concerning Griffiths Valuation, Ireland's most important census substitute. (And a little bit more thrown in for good measure!)

National Archives of Ireland's Griffiths Valuation House and Field Books

Regular readers of Irish Genealogy News will be aware that I've been following the slow road towards digitisation of the 'preliminary books' associated with Griffiths Valuation – the National Archives of Ireland's collection of Field and House Books, 1848–1860 – since I learned these were 'in the pipe' at Back To Our Past in October 2013.

That was the year the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (PRONI) had uploaded Griffiths Valuation Revision Books (1864–1933) for the counties of Antrim, Armagh, Down, Fermanagh, LondonDerry and Tyrone for free consumption, a move that has proved an outstanding success for PRONI and for researchers lucky enough to have ancestors from those counties. (It turned the rest of us green.)

While there's no hint (see Valuation Office below) of a similar project to upload the Cancelled/Revision Books held by the Valuation Office for the 26 counties of the Republic of Ireland, the NAI's Valuation Office House and Field Books will be useful resources for Irish genealogists, and I'm looking forward to their online arrival. It's taken a while, and there has been a considerable delay in getting the documents fit for release. Having told me last May of a cataloguing issue that required some parts of the process to return to the starting post, Catriona Crowe, NAI's Head of Special Projects, tells me this week that 'it's nearly there'.

I hope to soon have more news about when the collection will go live on the NAI's Genealogy site and FindMyPast's database. The records will be free to access on both sites.

Following the House and Field Books into the online environment will be the NAI's copy Will Books from the second half of the 19th century, and the pre-1858 indexes of the wills and administrations granted by the Prerogative Court and the Diocesan Courts. These, too, will be free to access on both the NAI's Genealogy site and FindMyPast.ie.

Valuation Office's Cancelled/Revision Books

You may remember that last summer saw the publication of a Request for Tender from the Dublin-based Valuation Office's project to digitise its collection of Cancelled/Revision Books. I'm pleased to confirm that a supplier has started work.

But before we all get over-excited, let's look at the use of that word 'digitisation'. Like most ever-optimistic researchers, I hear 'digitisation' as meaning that documents are going to be scanned into digital images, which will then be linked to a searchable indexed database, which I can then play with to my little heart's content. However, in quite a few instances recently, I've seen the word used to describe projects where documents are going to be scanned into digital images... Full stop. The term itself is not to blame. Both are digitisations. But the results are a world apart.

The Valuation Office's project is not going to result in a PRONI Revision Books looky-likey. Have a good cry, now. Instead, it will create an estimated 1.6million images that can be viewed on a computer terminal at the VO Research Room in the Irish Life Building. Researchers will be able to view the images on-screen in Cancelled/Revision Book order rather than pawing over the pages of the historical books.

While I love the physical experience of handling the old books and turning the slightly grimey pages to make new discoveries, I can't deny that the computerised option is necessary if the historical originals are to be preserved. The pilot scheme, which has been running for a year or so using the books for Counties Mayo, Kerry and Tipperary and Dublin City, has proved to be successful; the computer program is very simple, and the colour images are of very high quality, so you can easily pick out the different coloured inks used to indicate the dates of revisions.

There is no plan to place the digitised images online, but having ready computer access to the images may allow VO staff to extend a formal email service for those who can't visit the Dublin Research Room in person. I also understand that the historical books will continue to be in use until the entire digitisation project is completed. There will not be a gradual, county by county withdrawal.

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

IFHF's latest Clann newsletter published

https://flipflashpages.uniflip.com/3/71043/345958/pub/
The latest edition of Clann, the quarterly newsletter of the Irish Family History Foundation, has been published.

As usual, it brings a round-up of additions to RootsIreland.ie over the last three months (all reported in Irish Genealogy News, of course!) and details of happenings and plans for the IFHF's network of Heritage/Genealogy Centres across the island.

There are also book reviews and a couple of articles.

It's free to view on-screen in flip-page mode or to download as a pdf. Just click the image.

Limerick's Genealogy Day returns on 14 March

Following last year's successful inaugural event when Limerick was Ireland's City of Culture, Genealogy Day will be returning to ChristChurch on Saturday 14 March. 

The organisers are Christ Church United Presbyterian and Methodist Church in partnership with the Irish Ancestry Research Centre (IARC) and, as last year, they will be bringing together the historical church registers from several denominations in Limerick including Methodist, Presbyterian, the Religious Society of Friends in Ireland (Quaker) and the Church of Latter Day Saints (Mormon).

"It's an unusual event," says IARC's John King. "It invites the local community to take a rare opportunity to view original baptism and marriage records, to discuss local history and to sit down with experts to discover something about their own ancestors."

Genealogy Day will take place in Christ Church at  51A O'Connell Street at the start of the city's week-long St Patrick's Festival. It's completely free to attend and there's no need to book. Hours are 10am to 3pm. The day will conclude with a lecture on the Special Collections of the University of Limerick Library.

As well as the historical church registers, professional genealogical research services such as Eneclann, Find my Past, IARC and Limerick Genealogy will be attending. So too will institutional repositories such as Limerick Museum & Archives and the University of Limerick. Local groups such as the Irish Georgian Society and the Thomond Archaeological & Historical Society have also been invited.

Letters of 1916 project receives funding for outreach

Some 1700 letters have already been contributed
Great news from the Letters of 1916 project: the team has been awarded a Discover Grant from Science Foundation Ireland (SFI).

The SFI's €1.6 million total funding will be shared by 39 initiatives designed to encourage people of all ages to develop an active and informed interest and involvement in science, technology, engineering and maths in Ireland. The financial support will allow the Letters of 1916 project to extend its outreach, with four Community Engagement Events planned for Enniscorthy, Wexford; Cork; Galway and Belfast this year.

The Letters of 1916 project is the first public humanities crowd-sourced project in Ireland and is creating a digital collection of letters written around the time of the Easter Rising (1 Nov 1915 – 31 Oct 1916).

Some of the letters submitted were held at institutions (in Ireland and abroad), while others have been submitted by private individuals whose ancestors lived through the period. These letters comment on the Easter Rising, literature and art, World War One, politics, business and ordinary daily life. The collection will add a new perspective to the events of the period, a confidential and intimate glimpse into early 20th-Century life in Ireland, as well as how Irish politics was viewed internationally.

As of the end of January, some 1598 letters had been transcribed and a further 100-odd were uploaded and awaiting transcription by the project's volunteers. If you have a letter to contribute or would like to discover some of the previously untold stories hidden in the letters of 1916 by becoming a volunteer transcriber, see the Contribute page.

The online archive is scheduled to launch this November but, in the meantime, the project's website presents a collection of 'Featured Letters' which have been contextualised by the team with biographical and historical background and a certain amount of 'reading between the lines'.

Those attending the newly-funded Letters of 1916 community engagement events will learn about the technology and the practices used to create and manage a digital archive, as well as how to ‘read’ advanced discovery methods (including network analysis, topic modeling, and geospatial mapping).

They will be offered the opportunity to take a hands-on part in the processing of historical documents for inclusion in a digital archive and experience the full range of activities from digital imaging to processing to uploading letters using the Omeka content management system. They will also be tutored on how to create machine-readable transcriptions of letters using XML/TEI tags. By taking part, attendees will gain a new insight into, and appreciation for, the technologies behind Web 2.0.

BMD announcements for Cork, 1828-30: now online

http://www.corkpastandpresent.ie/genealogy/mcdonellsindexofbirthsdeathsandmarriages/
Cork City Libraries's Local Studies Department has uploaded another useful addition to its online resources section on CorkPastAndPresent.ie (an essential site for anyone with Cork City and county ancestors).

It's the McDonnell's Index of Births, Marriages and Deaths, which includes bmd announcements published in The Constitution and Cork Advertiser newspaper from 1828 to 1830.

These transcriptions are the work of a local researcher, Paschal McDonnell. A member of the Local Studies team told Irish Genealogy News that this date was chosen as a continuation of the work carried out by renowned Irish genealogist Rosemary ffolliatt whose transcriptions of earlier editions appeared in her magazine The Irish Ancestor (published 1969–1986).

Mr McDonnell started his transcription work with the 1828 announcements and, as far as I can see from looking at his Indexes, continued with the following two years. This isn't clear from the filenames which suggest that events for 1828 alone are included. Click the image above to choose from the Births, Marriages and Deaths pdf (freely downloadable).

The Cork Constitution is not currently included in either of the two big online Irish newspaper databases (IrishNewsArchive.com or BritishNewspaperArchive.co.uk/FindMyPast) but they are available to view at the Local Studies Rooms at Cork Central Library on Grand Parade, Cork; the holding includes bound volumes of the paper run, with some gaps) from 1825 to 1922, while microfilmed copies can be consulted for 1823, 1826-1833, 1835-1837, 1839-1848.

Strong Irish-themes for Canberra 2015 programme

The 14th Australasian Congress on Genealogy and Heraldry will be taking place at the National Convention Centre Canberra from Thursday 26 (evening) to Monday 30 March. The theme of this year's Congress is 'Generations meeting across time'.

Featuring a trade hall, vendor demonstrations and four streams of presentations throughout the day, there is plenty on offer for every Irish family historian, no matter their level of experience. I don't know why but I was surprised to see quite so many Irish-themed lectures in the extensive programme, which classifies every session by level from beginner to advanced and features high quality Australian and international speakers.

Since there are so many Irish lectures, I think I'll just let you find them for yourself in the busy Congress schedule.

As you'd expect from such a major event, there are social events, a research interests register, a Librarians' Seminar, a range of excursions for non-genie pals and spouses, and opportunities for after-hours research at local respositories.

Registration is required for single day attendance or for the full four-day package.


Monday, 9 February 2015

Irish family history and heritage events, 9–21 February

Monday 9 February: The story of Limerick Palatines, with Austin Bovenizer. Host: Limerick Historical Society. Venue: Room 301, Mary Immaculate College, Limerick. 8pm. Admission is free and everybody is welcome.

Monday 9 February: My experience of family history research, with George Busby. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Newtownabbey Branch. Venue: Drama Theatre, Glengormley High School, 134 Ballyclare Road, Newtownabbey, BT36 5HP. 7pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 10 February: The Comerfords in Ireland: disentangling myths and legends, with Rev Comerford. Host: Genealogical Society of Ireland. Venue: Dún Laoghaire FE Institute, Cumberland Street, Dún Laoghaire, Co Dublin. 8pm. Admission: €3.

Tuesday 10 February: DNA and family history, with George Gordon. Venue: Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Lisburn Branch. Venue: Bridge Community Centre, Railway Stree, Lisburn. All welcome. 7:30pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 10 February: Book launch: Fighting for Republican Spain, by Barry McLoughlin. Host: Irish Centre for the Histories of Labour and Class. Venue: Charlie Byrne's Bookshop, Middle Street, Galway. 6pm.The book includes bio details on the 230 Irish volunteers who went to defend the Spanish Republic. All welcome.

Tuesday 10 February: The Hanging of the Kearneys in Tallaght, 1816, with Eamonn Maloney. Host: Tallaght Historical Society. Venue: County Library, Tallaght, Co Dublin. 7pm.

Wednesday 11 February: Mourne men and U-boats, with Matt Maginnis. Host and Venue: Newry & Mourne Museum, Bagenal's Castle, Castle Street/1A Bank Parade, Newry, BT34 2BY. 7:30pm. Light refreshments served. Free but need to book by phone to 028 3031 3173 or email.

Wednesday 11 February: Linguistic Connections between Ireland and Scotland, a lunchtime talk with Professor Mícheál Ó Mainnín. Host and Venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. Lecture Theatre at 1pm. Free but must book by email to proni@dcalni.gov.uk or tel: 028 90 534800.

Thursday 12 February: The Famine in County Monaghan, with Brian Mac Domhnall. Host: Friends of Monaghan County Museum Lecture Series. Venue: Monaghan County Museum. 1-2 Hill Street, Monaghan Town. 8pm. Free. All welcome.

Thursday 12 February: National Archives of Ireland's publication plans for 2015, with Catriona Crowe. Hosts: Eneclann and Ancestor Network. Venue: Boardroom, National Archives of Ireland, Bishop Street, Dublin 8. 2:30pm. Free, but need to book by email. Limited to 12 attendees.

Thursday 12 February: The forgotten copper mines of West Carbery, with Paddy O'Sullivan. Host: Cork Literary and Scientific Society. Venue: Crawford Art Gallery, Emmet Place, Cork City. 8pm. Admission: €8.

Thursday 12 February: Irish Emigration to Canada in the 1820s, with John O'Connell. Host: Cork Genealogical Society. Venue: FRC, Sarsfield Road, Wilton, Cork City. 8pm. All welcome.

Friday 13 February: Irish soldiers on film, with Captain Labhras Joye. Host: Military History Society of Ireland. Venue: Griffith College, South Circular Rd, Dublin 8. All welcome. 8pm.

Friday 13 February: Where did they all go? Irish emigration in the 19th century, an evening seminar. Host: Edenderry Historical Society. Venue: Town Hall, Edenderry, Co Offaly. Details.

Saturday 14 February:  Learn to love your computer, again: how to get better results from the digital tools at your command, with Mary Cahill. Hosts: Eneclann and Ancestor Network. Venue: Trustees Room of the National Library, Kildare St, Dublin 2.  2pm. Free, but need to book by email. Limited to 16 attendees.

Saturday 14 February: Drop-in Genealogy workshop, with Mayo Genealogy Group. Venue: NMI, Country Life, Turlough Park, Castlebar, Co Mayo. Free. No booking required and new researchers welcome. 11:3am–1pm.

Saturday 14 February: Forms and organisation, with Audrey Leonard. An 'Irish Saturday' class. Host: Irish Genealogical Society International (IGSI). Venue: William J. Hoffman Library and Research Center, previously known as the Minnesota Genealogical Society (MGS) library, located at 1185 Concord Street North, S. St. Paul, Minnesota, USA. 10:30am to Noon. $10 for IGSI members and $15 for non-members. Register.

Monday 16 February: The Cork, Bandon and Southcoast Railway, with Chris Larkin. Host: Enniskeane Area Heritage Group and Ballineen & Enniskeane Dev Assoc. Venue: Cort Mhuire, Ballineen, Co Cork. 8pm. €5 (students free). All welcome.

Monday 16 February: History of Derry through the River Foyle, with Roy Hamilton. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Foyle Branch. Venue: City's Central Library, 35 Foyle Street, Derry, Co LondonDerry BT48 6AL. 7pm. All welcome. (Rescheduled from 2 February.)

Monday 16 February: Sir Richard and William Vitruvius Morrison and their remodeling of the Irish Country House, with Edmund Joyce. Part of the Carton Lecture Series. Host: Centre for the Study of Historic Irish Houses and Estates & NUI Maynooth. Venue: Carton House, Maynooth, Co Kildare. Admission fee €10. Light refreshments served from 7:15pm. Enquiries (0)1 651 7708.

Monday 16 February: The workhouse in Larne, with Rev John Nelson. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Larne Branch. Venue: Larne Bowling & Lawn Tennis Club, 112-120 Glenarm Road, Larne, BT40 1DZ. 7:30pm. All welcome.

Monday 16 February: James H Tuke, Quaker Philanthropist, with Gerry Moran. Host: Galway Archaeological and Historical Society. Venue: Harbour Hotel, Dock Road, Galway. 8pm.

Tuesday 17 February to Saturday 28 April: The 1913 Lockout Tapestry will be on display. Consisting of 32 panels illustrating the historical event that saw 100,000 people in Dublin facing starvation as a consequence of a conflict between capital and labour forces. A collaborative visual arts project of commemoration. Dublin City Library & Archive, Pearse Street, Dublin 2. Free.

Wednesday 18 February: Explore Archives Online. Practical workshops and behind the scenes tours. Host and Venue: Public Record Office of Northern Ireland, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. 2—4:30pm. Free. Fully booked. Waiting list: email at proni@dcalni.gov.uk.

Wednesday 18 February: A sort of homecoming: Irish soldiers and the aftermath of the Great War, with Dr Myles Dungan. Host and Venue: Newry & Mourne Museum, Bagenal's Castle , Castle Street, 1A Bank Parade, Newry BT34 2BY. 7:30pm. Light refreshments served. Free but need to book by phone to 028 3031 3173 or email.

Wednesday 18 February: Waterford people and stories from old newspapers, with William Fraher. Host: Waterford County Museum. Venue: Green Room, Town Hall, Dungarvan, Co Waterford. 8 pm. Admission: €5.00

Wednesday 18 February: Memories of the Emergency in Dublin, with Mary Muldowney. Host: Ballsbridge, Donnybrook and Sandymount Historical Society. Venue: Pembroke Library, Anglesea Road, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4. 1pm. Book via Library on (01)668 9575 or pembrokelibrary@dublincity.ie.

Wednesday 18 February: Trawling under sail in Dubiln Bay, with Cormac Lowth. Host: Dún Laoghaire Borough Historical Society. Venue: Kingston Hotel, Adelaide Street, Dún Laoghaire. 8pm. Members €2.50; Guests: €3:50. Retired: €2.

Wednesday 18 February: The Quakers in Carlow, with John Smyth. Host: Carlow Historical and Archaeological Society. Venue: Seven Oaks Hotel, Carlow. 8pm. All welcome.

Thursday 19 February: Beginning your family history, with Clare Roots Society. Venue: Maguire Suite, Old Ground Hotel, O'Connell Street, Ennis, Co. Clare. 8pm. Everyone welcome.

Thursday 19 February: Digital records, with Joan Magee. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, North down and Ards Branch. Venue: 1st Presbyterian Church Hall, Main Street, Bangor, Co Down. 7:30pm. All welcome.

Thursday 19 February: Becoming revolutionary: The year before 1916, with Brian Hughes. Hosts: Glasnevin Trust and Trinity College Dublin. Venue: Glasnevin Cemetery Museum, Finglas Road, Dublin 11. 7pm. Tickets €10 (or €40 the series). Bookings by telephone (0)1 882 6550 or email: booking@glasnevintrust.ie.

Saturday 21 February: Irish Genealogy help session, with Kathleen McGee, at 10am; Irish Famine Records at NARA, with Dorothy Dougherty at 11am. Host: Irish Family History Forum. Venue: Bethpage Public Library, 47 Powell Avenue, Bethpage, NY, 11714, USA. Details.

Saturday 21 February: Family history and folklore, with Seamus MacAnnaidh. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Fermanagh Branch. Venue: The Library, Halls Lane, Enniskillen, Co. Fermanagh, BT74 7DR. 2:15pm. All welcome.


Friday, 6 February 2015

Project underway on Tullynally Castle's wage ledgers

Tullynally Castle, near Castlepollard, Co Westmeath.
Photo by Peter Gavigan
An interesting new family history resource is being prepared by Dún Na Sí Heritage Centre, the Irish Family History Foundation's designated genealogical centre for County Westmeath, in collaboration with the Pakenham family of Tullynally Castle.

The project involves the scanning and indexing of 21 volumes of wages ledgers for staff who worked at the Castle near Castlepollard in the north of the county. Also known as Packenham Hall Castle, Tullynally is the largest house in private hands in Ireland and has been the home of the Packenham family (now the Earls
of Longford) since the second half of the 17th century.

The wages ledgers don't go back that far! Senior genealogist Bernie Norris told Irish Genealogy News that the ledgers date to the early 1800s. "They record both men and women by their first name and surname, which is quite unusual for these types of records, and they are laid out by the days of the week to show exactly which days were worked and how much was due in wages. Later ledgers also record the very specific duties performed by each individual."

The scanning of the ledgers is underway and should be completed in the next few months, at which point the collection will be indexed by name.

"We're not expecting that the resulting database will be uploaded to the Internet for full public access," says Bernie. "However, the Pakenham family is keen that this information be shared without charge with researchers who believe their ancestor worked in the house or in the grounds."

No research queries can be handled until the project is finished, so, if you know your family had some connection with the Castle, keep an eye on the Dún Na Sí Heritage Centre website for that news before submitting your request.

Free access to Ancestry IE, UK & NZ this weekend

http://www.kqzyfj.com/p7121qgpmgo39B7B74C354855C45 Ancestry has a couple of free access promotions running this weekend. The terms are pretty much the same for each, but check out the different expiry times.

Ireland and UK


First up is free access to Ancestry.co.uk and its UK and Ireland collection of some one billion records. You can see the full range of Irish collections here.

The free access weekend started this morning and ends at midnight on Sunday 8 February (23:59 GMT). You need to have an account (not a current subscription) in order to take advantage of the offer, so you'll need to register if you haven't already. It's free to register and you don't have to provide credit card details.

Waitangi Day

http://search.ancestry.com.au/search/group/NZ_Waitangi_Day
Ancestry.com.au has a separate offer running this weekend to mark Waitangi Day. All NZ records are free until midnight on Monday 9 February (11:50 NZDT).

See the range of New Zealand collections here.

As with the UK promo, you need to register for free with Ancestry.com.au with your name and email address. A username and password is then emailed to you for access to the records.

Happy researching!








Thursday, 5 February 2015

Irish and Ulster-Scots in Northern Ireland

Some interesting figures have been published today into the knowledge and use of Irish and Ulster-Scots in Northern Ireland. The main findings, below, are the result of a survey carried out on behalf of the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA).

Irish
  • In 2013/14, 15% of the population have some knowledge of Irish, i.e. they can understand, speak, read or write Irish. This is an increase on the 13% of the population who had some knowledge of Irish in 2011/12.
  • A higher proportion of Catholics (30%) have knowledge of Irish than both those with other or no religion (12%) and Protestants (3%).
  • Adults living in the least deprived areas are less likely to have knowledge of Irish than those living in the most deprived areas (13% and 19% respectively).
  • Four out of every 100 people (4%) use Irish at home, conversing with family or housemates, at least occasionally. A similar proportion (4%) use Irish socially, at least occasionally, conversing with friends or acquaintances.
  • Almost a half (49%) of adults agree that Irish is an important part of Northern Irish culture.

Ulster-Scots
  • In 2013/14, 17% of the population had some knowledge of Ulster-Scots, i.e. can understand, speak, read or write Ulster-Scots. This is an increase on the 15% of the population who had some knowledge of Ulster-Scots in 2011/12.
  • Gender, age, religious background, marital status, having a disability, having dependants and where adults live are all related to whether they have any knowledge of Ulster-Scots.
  • Six out of every hundred people (6%) use Ulster-Scots at home, conversing with family or housemates, at least occasionally. A similar proportion (7%) use Ulster-Scots socially, at least occasionally, conversing with friends or acquaintances.
  • More than two out of every five (42%) adults agree that Ulster-Scots is an important part of Northern Irish culture.

Company founded to protect Ireland's folklore heritage

NFF Chairman Cathal Goan with board members
Dr Kelly Fitzgerald and Professor Ríonach uí Ógáin
A new company, the National Folklore Foundation (NFF), has been established with a mission to protect, preserve and promote Ireland's outstanding National Folklore Collection.

The latter is held in trust by University College Dublin and is one of the largest folklore collections in the world. It runs to 3million pages in manuscript form and represents the voices of 100,000 contributors, including 10,000 hours of audio recordings, 70,000 photographs and 1,000 hours of moving images, and tells the story of Irish life, folk history and culture.

Essentially, the NFF will provide the National Folklore Collection with the champion it has long needed. A primary objective will be to increase public awareness of Irish folklore and develop greater interest in it, and its fundraising role will enable the Collection to be enhanced and extended with new Irish folklore material. It will also allow new and current material to be published and disseminated nationally and internationally. This should mean that, in time, we'll be seeing more digitisation and more material appearing on Dúchas.ie.

Dúchas.ie was quietly launched just over a year ago with a first tranche of the Schools' Manuscript Collection freely viewable. This allowed visitors to the site the opportunity to read on-screen some 64,000 pages of handwritten folklore recorded by schoolchildren in counties Dublin, Mayo, Donegal and Waterford in the late 1930s. Since then, this online collection has been increased with children's stories from counties Galway and Leitrim; all can be searched by name and parish.

Críostóir Mac Cárthaigh, senior archivist at the National Folklore Collection, told Irish Genealogy News that the digitisation team is now working on the pages written by pupils in Co Kerry. In addition, with an agreed list of around 4,000 keywords (search vocabulary) now in place, the Topics search facility should go live this summer.

The National Folklore Foundation is a spin-out from UCD's School of Irish Celtic Studies, Irish Folklore and Linguistics.

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Clare Library releases Ennis School Rolls, 1920-30

Roll Books for the Christian Brothers School in Ennis have been made available, free, on Clare County Library's website.

The Books date from 1920 to 1930, when the school was still a boys-only educational establishment, and provide some useful information for researchers. As well as the basic name, address, dates joined and left the school etc, the 500-odd entries also provide the occupation of the parent, details of any previous school, and brief notes on the pupil's future destination. The latter details cover a range of options open to a pupil on reaching the legal school leaving age of 14: 'working', 'England', 'America', 'Limerick', at home, 'Secondary School', and so on.

The records can be viewed by date and by surname, and have been transcribed and donated to the Library by Marianne McGough.

Find out more about Clare County Library's school-related collections here.


PRONI: Expressions to be avoided

The Public Record Office of Northern Ireland's Document of the Month for February is a 'first day brief' paper from Government files in 1985. First Day Briefs were issued to brand-new Government Ministers in Belfast, and this particular one – Expressions to be Avoided (and Notes on Other Terminology) – was prepared for the incoming Secretary of State, Tom King, in September 1985. He was to hold that position until July 1989.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B5-KQnqDiArgb1R0TWlET1pUU2s/view?usp=sharing
A part of the First Day Brief advising on how to refer to The Republic of Ireland.
Click image to download (pdf 119kb) PRONI's Document of the Month for February

PRONI's Graham Jackson says this document was just one part of a weighty 130-page First Day Brief that was presented to him. 'It gives a list of terms to avoid, together with an accompanying contextual explanation for each term and possible alternative terms to use where necessary.

'Its simplicity belies the complexity of the situation into which the new Minister was being deployed. It reveals a host of intricate sensitivities and pitfalls to be negotiated by the Minister in the course of their initial public appearances, as they started their new job during the mid-eighties.'